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Metadata is the key to the big data

  • 3 min read

The business goal of every communication service provider (CSP) is to monetise infrastructure investments, improve the customer experience and develop business models which would enable them to generate additional revenue. In recent years, the service providers have realised the power of Big Data in order to achieve all these goals.

However, a major problem with Big Data is the sheer amount of information and the associated number of disparate information silos that can extend across multiple business units. Semi-structured and unstructured data content is often spread across many internal operational systems, business applications, networks, servers and smart-connected devices. Although it is assumed that technology and telecommunications organisations are far more technologically sophisticated in running their businesses, in reality, it is not true.

Service providers depend heavily on past experiences, data security, shared expertise, secure collaboration, and even the basics such as effective search. Concept Searching as an enterprise framework solves these challenges and more. CSPs have to deal with hundreds of thousands of users’ call detail records, internet traffic and transaction data, usage patterns, technical fault data, and location data

Metadata can greatly streamline and enhance processes to collect, integrate, and analyse Big Data sources. It helps organisations to roughly know where a problem exists and can inform them whether a behaviour is suspicious and needs further analysis. Metadata has the ability to manage the entire data life cycle, processes, and customers or users affecting specific business information. It can provide an audit trail that can be essential at any given point in time. This results in expediting response to breaches by feeding SIEMs and other big data security analytics solutions with NetFlow/IPFIX records, URL/URI information, SIP request information, HTTP response codes, and DNS queries.

Since metadata is the descriptive, structural data, it can identify ‘Little Data’ that ultimately provides structure to what becomes Big Data. An article in the Harvard Business Review mentions three interesting differences between Big Data and Little Data:

  • FocusThe focus of Big Data is to advance organisational goals, while Little Data helps individuals achieve personal goals.
  • Visibility: Individuals can’t see Big Data; Little Data helps them see it better.
  • Control: Big Data is controlled by organisations, while Little Data is controlled by individuals. Companies grant permission for individuals to access Big Data, while individuals grant permission to organisations to access Little Data.

Metadata is imperative in the world of big data, and if you invest in harvesting metadata, it can lessen the burden on security tools and uncover threats faster. Cubro Probe converts real-time network traffic to metadata which gives you complete access to your data and provides native support to any big data infrastructure.